Beware the DSPV!

Dave shared the following as part of a testimony slot on Sunday 31 May 2020.

The best testimonies come from the biggest fights. The darker the hour, the bigger the miracle, the more there is to praise God for.

I’m finding that God is hitting the reset button on my head knowledge and the scripture that I’m using to encourage myself when I’m scared, stressed, feeling down and all those negative emotions. Maybe you’re like me and you’ve got scriptures that you know off by heart, or through a song and you recite them when you feel the need to do so.

However, I had become accustomed to reading the DSPV of the Bible, ie the Dave’s Self Pity Version. It’s the version my head recites when I’m feeling sorry for myself. But the DSPV doesn’t tell me the truth and it enables my feelings to decide my actions, not my faith.

Let me give you an example. Last year some time, I was mowing the lawn. I can’t remember the specifics but I was going through a rough patch, and I was living in faith that the outcome was going to be positive. So, I had my phone in my pocket, headphones plugged in and on repeat was the song “This is how I fight my battles” by Michael W Smith. It’s a really basic song. Do you know it?

The first part goes: This is how I fight my battles.

And the second part is: It may look like I’m surrounded, but I’m surrounded by You.

And the song repeats those two sections. It encouraged me to praise during the tough time I was going through because God deserves our praise even when everything is against us. The version I was listening to builds up and I was really getting into the song. I spent the whole time mowing the lawn singing these two sections over and over again. After I finished the lawn and got back into the house, Lore commented that she could hear me over the mower. I was fighting my battle through praise.

But recently, I’ve been allowing myself to be influenced by how I feel and not by my faith. Life has been really demanding since lockdown, adapting to working from home, with the family in close proximity. The amount of work has significantly increased and the work / life balance had been found wanting, so I got myself into a situation of feeling overwhelmed and I wasn’t coping with it.

I never want or intend to get myself into these situations, but looking back, it gives God an opportunity and He uses them. So, the verse that I had translated into the DSPV of the Bible was Psalm 150:6 which says: When you’re in the mood, praise the Lord.

The rendition actually found in the Bible states: Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.

The Biblical version doesn’t mention anything about how I feel, but simply asks the question, ‘Am I alive?’ And if the answer is ‘yes’ (which it always has been so far!) then now is the time to praise the Lord. So, I wake up in the morning, I take a breath and I praise the Lord! He’s given me another day. Does it matter that I’m tired and in over my head? Or that I feel as if I have all the problems of the world on my shoulders? Not at all. As long as I have breath in my lungs, I will continue to praise the Lord.

To wrap it up, God is reminding me that I need to live by faith and not by sight, feeling, circumstance or the DSPV. Faith is not a feeling. Hebrews 11:1 tells us that: Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.

So, no matter what we are going through right now, let’s praise the Lord and let’s live by faith.

Amen.

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